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Ankle Pain

Peroneal Tendonitis Advice

Minute Read


Posted 1 year ago


Last updated: 15/05/2023


by James McCormack

Peroneal Tendonitis Recovery Time?

Peroneal Tendonitis requires 8-12 weeks of recovery time under the guidance of a Physical Therapist.  

If you quickly identify the symptoms of Peroneal Tendonitis and follow the appropriate treatment, then you may recover from the condition within 8 weeks. 

In chronic cases of Peroneal Tendonitis, it takes up to 12 weeks to heal after a thorough rehabilitation protocol that addresses any strength deficits and biomechanical issues.

What does Peroneal Tendonitis feel like?

Peroneal tendonitis is a condition that causes inflammation in the tendons that run along the outer ankle bone and the side of the foot. Patients with Peroneal Tendonitis feel a dull ache on the outer side of their ankle and foot. If the symptoms of Peroneal Tendonitis are aggravated by activities such as running, then a patient may feel sharper pain during activity that reduces to a dull ache with rest.

One of the most common symptoms of Peroneal Tendonitis for a patient to feel is stiffness first thing in the morning on the outer ankle for up to an hour which eases with gentle walking while it is normally pain-free at rest.

It is uncommon to feel numbness or pins and needles with Peroneal Tendonitis unless there is irritation of the Peroneal Nerve. At the same time, there should be a mechanical pattern of pain, i.e. pain is worse with activity and subsides with rest.

Diagram of what peroneal tendonitis feels like

How do I know if I have Peroneal Tendonitis?

Peroneal Tendonitis is usually gradual in onset rather than a sudden presentation. It is mechanical in nature meaning that causes often include an increase in activity levels or a change in footwear.

The Peroneal Tendons are painful to touch and pain can be provoked by resisting dorsiflexion and plantarflexion of your foot.

Picture pointing to the location of pain of peroneal tendonitis

Do I need Crutches for Peroneal Tendonitis?

In nearly all scenarios, you will not need crutches for Peroneal Tendonitis. Even in severe cases, it is possible to continue walking with Peroneal Tendonitis, and it is important to keep the tendon active. 

In persistent cases that do not settle down with Physical Therapy, then a bride period of time wearing a walker boot may be necessary rather than using crutches. 

Should I massage Peroneal Tendonitis?

Massage is a good option for providing pain relief for Peroneal Tendonitis. Consider massaging the muscle of the Peroneus rather than the tendon, as they can increase blood flow to the area, providing pain relief.

However, this is not a long-term solution. If you think you have the symptoms of Peroneal Tendonitis, you should see a Physical Therapist for a clinical examination.

Peroneal Tendonitis exercises to avoid?

In our experience, you should avoid impact exercises such as running, hopping, and jumping if you have Peroneal Tendonitis.

If possible, you should avoid activities such as hiking, walking on uneven surfaces or uphill walking.

If you have severe symptoms of Peroneal Tendonitis consider non-impact cardiovascular exercises such as swimming, cycling or using the elliptical to maintain your fitness. 

Picture of someone jumping

What should I do if Peroneal Tendonitis is getting worse?

If you have Peroneal Tendonitis and your symptoms are getting worse, it is important to seek medical attention to prevent further irritation and to prevent secondary injuries from occurring.

The first step is to see a Physical Therapist for an examination, as they can evaluate the extent of the injury and create a rehabilitation plan tailored to your specific needs. Rehabilitation for Peroneal Tendonitis typically includes exercises to strengthen the muscles around the foot and ankle and advice on proper footwear and insoles in some cases.

If you have completed a course of Physical Therapy and your symptoms continue to worsen, then we recommend a consultation with a Sports Medicine Doctor or a Foot and ankle consultant who may recommend a steriod injection to reduce inflammation levels in the tendon.

If this is unsuccessful, Peroneal Tendonitis surgery involving Peroneal Tendon debridement may be required.

Physiotherapy with James McCormack

This is not medical advice and we recommend a consultation with a medical professional such as James McCormack to achieve a diagnosis. He offers Online Physiotherapy Appointments weekly.

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